Audit: Accounting weaknesses in Okla. Land Office

AP News
Posted: Nov 12, 2009 5:11 PM

An audit of the School Land Office has found accounting weaknesses in a division of the agency where a former employee is accused of embezzling nearly $1.16 million.

A multi-county grand jury has indicted Roger Q. Melson on 174 counts of embezzlement. Prosecutors say Melson, former director of audit for the Land Office's royalty audit division, allegedly took the money to feed a gambling habit.

They say Melson created an entity called the "Commissioner of the Land Office" at the Secretary of State's Office. He is accused of taking checks from the agency's mail room and depositing them for personal use.

The audit, made public on Thursday, found that internal auditing controls in the division were overridden with regard to cash receipts.